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SYTYCD: Top 4 Thoughts

After a busy two days, I was finally able to get caught up with this weeks episode. I enjoyed Mia’s opening number but not my favorite of hers…I think my arms were tired from just watching them spin the fabric around their hands. The all-stars also return this week with a bit of requirement(well not really). All the participated in Monday’s episode, finished in the top 4 in their respective seasons. I was excited to see JaJa back, because if my memory is right, she is the only female hip hop dancer to make it to the top 4.

Also, it a few all-stars first time to choreograph for a live show, Jenna, Robert, and Comfort. I have to say enjoyed all of their dances and I hope we get to see them choreograph again for the show. If had to pick a favorite of the three, Robert’s piece that Marko and Hannahlie performed was my favorite.

Other Favorites

Jay Jay & Lauren: Mandy delivered a great jazz number, that was entertaining to watch. It reminded of the type of jazz dance that I am used to seeing.

Hannahlie & Darius: These two definitely were able to find a connection with each other quickly after losing their partner last week. It’s a good thing the did, because I don’t think that the Argentine Tango would have worked as well as it did.

Both group dances were good this week but the girls may have edged out to the guys for me but not by much.

The fan vote surprised this week in the top 4 reveal…in the sense that it wasn’t the top 2 guy and top 2 girls. Jensen, Hannahlie, Genessey, and Slavik are this seasons top 4. Sad to see Jay Jay and Darius go…I did’t not see that coming. I thought Jay Jay would have been in the top 4.

Next week will be the performance part of the finale and vote from this week and next week will determine the winner of this season.

August 29, 2018 I Written By

Dance is one of my biggest passions. I grew up dancing at Augusta West Dance Studio (the same studio that Kathryn McCormick). I have a BFA in theatre/dance from Valdosta State University. Tap is my favorite style of dance.

Top 10 to Top 8: Thoughts and Rankings

I really don’t know where to begin, other than just start from the beginning. A very colorful hip hop routine opened up the show and I really did enjoy. Jamal Sims choreographed this number, he is also a choreographer for the Step Up movies. Speaking of Step Up the fifth installment hits this Friday with many familiar faces, including Emilio.

Back to the show, Tara Lapinski was the guest judge this week. We also welcomed back Tabitha and Napoleon, who just finished working with Derek and Julianne Hough on their tour. Oh and I can’t forget about the All Stars. Overall the show was probably one of the best this season. I almost don’t even want to rank them but I will try, with my thoughts on the eliminated dances at the end.

Top 3

Zack and Amy: The second time in the night the audience was completely silent while they danced. What can I say other than Sonya is amazing. There’s not much else to say other than I think Zack showed a lot of growth this week.

Jacque and Chehon: I have to say I was expecting a classical pas de duex not a contemporary ballet by Travis. It was a simple and beautiful routine.

Tanisha and Ryan: So good to see Ryan back and he was the perfect partner for this dance. Miriam and Leonardo choreographed another great argentine tango with amazing lifts.

Top 2

Ricky and Lauren: This dance suited their personalities. Ricky is just great at everything and I’m pretty sure he is at least one oth the top two boys.

Casey and Kathryn: Another great pairing and it is really nice to see Casey do well. Hope he can keep it up next week.

Bottom 3

Jessica and Twitch: I was worried about this but thankfully she proved me wrong. It’s like she finally realized that she needed to step up to stay in the competition. Oh and I so loved the concept too, old man Twitch is cute.

Rudy and Jenna: Well they definitely had the chemistry down and the dancing was great too. It just falls behind others that were slightly better.

Valerie and Ade: I could see where the judges were coming from, she didn’t quite get into the character but I still loved the dance though.

Eliminated

Emilio and Jasmine: Emilio went out with a bang and I wish the results show was still around. Love everything about this dance. Oh and Jasmine almost stole the spotlight.

Bridget and Brandon: A Bollywood disco, turned out to be a fun and fast fusion of two dance styles.

Next week All Stars are: Twitch, Allison, Ryan, Mackenzie, Comfort, Jamie (season 3), Nick Lazzerini, and Will (season 4).

August 6, 2014 I Written By

Dance is one of my biggest passions. I grew up dancing at Augusta West Dance Studio (the same studio that Kathryn McCormick). I have a BFA in theatre/dance from Valdosta State University. Tap is my favorite style of dance.

Top 10: Power Rankings

So since they revealed which dancer is paired with each All Star, I figur ed I would do the power rankings a little different this week. I’m choosing to rank the guys and the girls separately and predict how I think they will do next week.

Guys

Casey: After a great performance this week, he gets to be paired with Kathryn. I’ve got a feeling this will be a good partnership and most likely a good dance.

Ricky: He is the best techincal dancer on the show and hard not put him at the top of the list. I think Lauren Froderman is a good match for him and I’m curious what style they will be dancing.

Zack: He should be ok being paired with Amy.

Rudy: It will be interesting to see him do ballroom. I think he will do an ok job but Jenna could over shadow him after all she is a judges favorite.

Emilio: The height difference will be interesting. I honestly have no clue how they may do. It could be really good or bad. I  also think it depends on what style they pick.

Girls

Tanisha & Jacque: They are kind of tied for me. The are both paired with an All Star that is also in their strongest style of dance. I’m excited to see Ryan dance again. Also I’m expecting a great pas de duex from Chehon and Jacque.

Valerie: I don’t think she will have a problem keeping up with Ade.

Bridget: Why do I get the feeling she could be dancing disco, Brandon is a great partner for it. Disco is tough to pull off so it’s another wait and see how it goes.

Jessica: While I think she will be safe next week she is pair with Twitch. She has a lot of work to do to keep up with the star that is Twitch.

What are your thoughts on the pairings?

July 31, 2014 I Written By

Dance is one of my biggest passions. I grew up dancing at Augusta West Dance Studio (the same studio that Kathryn McCormick). I have a BFA in theatre/dance from Valdosta State University. Tap is my favorite style of dance.

Chicago and Los Angeles Auditions: Thoughts

Great night of auditions. I’ll add my thoughts tomorrow but the impromptu duet that Fikshun had with Marie Poppins was my absolute favorite moment of the night. So what did you think.

The show picks back up in Chicago for day 2 of the auditions, but first we get to see those that participated in the polar plunge. Mary Murphy was up for that challenge and so was Jimmy Fallon. Fabrice Calmes of the Joffrey Ballet, joins Mary and Nigel for day 2.

Paul “The Puppet”: I liked this guy a very unique new style. It was like a very fluid version of popping and animation. Nigel was out voted about going the choreography round, so Paul was sent to the next round.

Emily James: I really hope that the  third time is the charm for her. How cute were her cousins and the youngest didn’t want a ticket.

Is it me or am I seeing more of the male dancers in the montages.

Franchesce: This girl has unique written all over her. She uses the fact that she has alopecia to her advantage. I agree with the judges that Sonya and Mia would love her.

Jenna: Her excitement over meeting Fabrice was just too cute and I now I think he will take more notice of her after that audition. I would love to see her on pointe too.

James: The bone breaking stuff is just so hard too watch.

Day 1 LA with Christina Applegate and plenty of Alumni in the audience. So many great dancers on day one I can’t wait for day two.

Jessica: One of my favorites of the night. I love that the judges don’t even talk and just hand her a ticket. I think there is a really good chance we will see her in the top 20. Loved her long hair too…little jealous.

Valerie: I love that tap seems to be becoming more popular on the show. She did have to go through choreography round and she made it to the next round.

JaJa: We have Philip Chbeeb  to thank for this girl. I remember her from ABDC and she was only 15 when I am me competed. Love seeing strong female dancers in the hip hop genre.

Kyle: He impressed me with his dancing, for only dancing in his living room and not in front of an audience. Plus he was able to hold his own in the battle with Fikshun, Cyrus, and Legacy.

Justine, Hailee: both great dancers and would love to see more of them

Maurcio and Daisy: great Pas de Duex

Sebastian: Hope he makes it to the green mile this time and maybe even to top 20.

Dani: Granted not the first time we heard a story like hers but I still love how dance that can help them overcome their problems. I was a little confused that they made her do the choreography round.

Marie Poppins: Love the stage name and her. I think she had the best moment of the night. She dances from the heart and got not only the judges attention but Fikshun’s as well. I don’t know what made him get up and dance with her but I’m glad he did. I really hope she can do the other styles cause I would love to she her in the top 20.

The girls are strong this Season.

June 4, 2014 I Written By

Dance is one of my biggest passions. I grew up dancing at Augusta West Dance Studio (the same studio that Kathryn McCormick). I have a BFA in theatre/dance from Valdosta State University. Tap is my favorite style of dance.

Podcast: SYTYCD Season 9 – Top 10 Week

Listen to the podcasts

Episode 52 direct download

Subscribe to podcast on iTunes


Time Stamps
0:00 – Introduction
1:27 – General thoughts about the bottom 4 and voting
4:12 – Bottom 2 Girls routines: Audrey & Witney
7:35 – Bottom 2 Guys routines: George & Chehon
10:57 – Other routines: Tiffany, Cole, Lindsay, Will, Cyrus, and Eliana
22:45 – Wrap-up

Episode Length: 23:42

As we move into the final set of live shows, the voting for this season continues to confuse us as Witney once again ended up in the bottom 2 girls. In particular, we’re unable to understand why she is not connecting with the audience (we think she’s fantastic!), but Tiffany, who’s been off the radar for us and seems to be an easy choice to send home, continues to avoid the bottom. We discuss the possible reasons for this, as well as what may have caused Audrey, George, and Chehon to also land in the bottom 4. Beyond the eliminations, we were extremely excited to see the return of all-star Jakob Karr, our favorite dancer to ever be on the show. We also discuss Cyrus and the way choreographers have been handling him this season, which brings up the question we asked at the end of season 8: should the show aim to choreograph/judge the dancers according to a universal standard, or should each dancer be considered individually according to his/her skill level? We should also mention that we loved the Eliana/Alex routine by Stacey Tookey, which demonstrated that with a proper partner Eliana is capable of amazing things!

Let us know what you think after listening to the podcast! You can leave us a comment here or on our blog, Reflections on Pop Entertainment. You can also follow us on Twitter and tweet with us. You can also visit our Facebook page, like us, and leave a comment there! We love feedback and will respond either with a comment or in our next published show.

August 29, 2012 I Written By

Over the past few years my fiancée Meghan slowly brought me into the world of television, turning me into a full-fledged fan of both scripted and reality shows. So You Think You Can Dance turned into one of my favorite reality shows as it is a competition that takes itself seriously, providing the audience with artistic choreography and talented dancers. It's certainly not something I ever expected to get emotionally invested in, but here I am! Meghan and I are very analytic when it comes to the things we enjoy. We constantly discussed and analyzed shows with each other and after doing this for a couple years, we decided that we should turn these discussions into a podcast. We created Reflections on Pop Entertainment, a podcast that provides commentary and analysis of popular entertainment as found in visual mediums, particularly television and film. So You Think You Can Dance Season 8 is the first television series we're covering with weekly podcasts and has allowed us to find our voice as well as actively contribute to the fan community. We hope that you'll enjoy our installments as they are posted to Pure So You Think You Can Dance!

SYTYCD Season 9: Los Angeles Auditions…Thoughts

Tonight’s auditions take us to Los Angeles and on of my favorite guest judges from last season Jesse Tyler Ferguson joins Mary and Nigel. I have to admit sometimes I get so wrapped up in the show I forget to take notes. It was a jammed packed two hours and plenty of talent in Los Angeles. I know that many will complain about the stories but in my opinion the stories are important to some of the dancers and how we will remember them. My suggestion is if you don’t like that stuff then don’t watch the show till we get to the live shows. Also, I think it’s really important to watch this season, so we don’t have to say goodbye to the show. Okay enough ranting and on to the dancers.

*Nigel tweeted along with the east coast, and glad he did. He did say he was watching at the Fox Studios and said they couldn’t find the right channel…lol. 

Alexa Anderson: Granted I don’t really remember her from last season but I’m glad she decided to come back. Loved that she had her hair pulled back but also thought she was a great dancer. 

“Johnny Waacks” Gibson: Cue the constant giggling from the judges, or as Nigel called it a Faux Pas Festival. I know whacking is a form of dance but it does sound so wrong. Granted not as good as Princess Lockaroo but not too shabby, but then again I really don’t know too much about whacking. 

Eliana G: When she said that she has trained with Joffrey and Ailey, two very well-known companies in the dance world, I didn’t need to see her dance to know that she was going to be good. Now the working with the silks and the pole is what caught my attention. All I can say is wow when in comes to the pole work the amount of strength that takes is insane. Needless to say she is amazing technical dancer and to be compared to Melanie is a great compliment. I hope we get to see more of her. 

The Ninja Twins Nick and James: So they are 33 and yes too old for the show and I’m sure some will complain about even showing them but I don’t care. I loved these two and they are incredibly entertaining and truthfully they need their own show. Which is something Nigel has thought of too, call me crazy but I hope it happens. It turns out they can actually dance and very thankful and humble for the opportunity that they show gave them. 

Sam Lenarz: Beautiful girl and beautiful dancer. I agreed with the judges she needs to work on her transitions. Happy to see her make it through the choreography round and I hope her family sees this and comes to their senses. 

Caley Carr: A crazy cool kind of guy who can tap. Love seeing the tap dancers on the show and was a bit disappointed he got cut. 

Megan Branch: My first thought when she started dancing was Sonya will like her. I liked her too and hope to see more of her in Vegas. 

Cole Horibe: A karate and dance fusion that I have to admit was kind of interesting. When he started listing the styles he has trained in and well I guess we will have to wait to Vegas to really know if any of it is true. 

David Matz: Sure he isn’t right for the show but I love seeing things I’ve never seen before. 

Steven Jacobsen: I have no idea what he was thinking with that first audition. Thank you Nigel for making him show what he can really do. He is the perfect example to stick to what you know in an audition. 

Jasmine and Marshae Mason: They previewed that story all night and I was relieved to see that Marshae survived that accident. Six weeks between the time of the accident and audition and he dances like that he deserves that ticket to Vegas. Jasmine his sister I loved and she reminded me of Lo Fro a little bit. 

Next week  Atlanta and well for me I’ll be in Vegas. Let us know your thoughts and any your favorites of the night.

May 30, 2012 I Written By

Dance is one of my biggest passions. I grew up dancing at Augusta West Dance Studio (the same studio that Kathryn McCormick). I have a BFA in theatre/dance from Valdosta State University. Tap is my favorite style of dance.

Open Letter to SYTYCD Producers: How to Fix SYTYCD

Dear SYTYCD Producers,

Here at PureSYTYCD, we’ve had several conversations lately about why ratings, Internet traffic and overall enthusiasm and discussion have been sinking season by season. Margaret says it can be traced to the infamous Fall season, Season 6, when our favorite show started changing swiftly and drastically. While some of the changes have been really amazing (All-Stars), some of them have been just dreadful (yes, I’m going to say it once again – the stage).

So Fox, Nigel, here are OUR pointers for how to fix the show (and readers, please, please add your own in the comments or tell us how you feel about ours and add your voice to the open letter).

1. Keep rotating judges and guest judges – just rotate Nigel right off the panel. We loved the guest judges this season (with the notable exceptions of Carmen Electra and Katie Holmes), especially the fact that we got a rotation of our favorite choreographers on the panel. We’ve learned that static judges are annoying, no matter who they are. Whether it was Nigel, Mary, Mia or Adam, we got tired of hearing the same voices when we already knew what they were going to say. Jean-Marc is a good (pervy) example of this on the Canadian show. However, Nigel almost never rotates out,  so we’re extra tired of him. If you need guest judges to replace him, we’ll make ourselves available. Hey, why not? Fans of the show are good judges, considering the best of the celebrity guest judges were the ones who were clearly fans.

2. Speaking of Nigel, let’s talk about his producing style. While we can’t say we’ve ever produced a show and we can only imagine the numerous concerns involved, we get a little annoyed by Nigel’s heavy-handed pulling-the-puppet-strings style. While we admire that he’s always willing to try new things and some of those new things have really been excellent, the best producing is the kind that doesn’t draw attention to itself. Nigel keeps insisting on shoving the dancers and the show into this perfectly produced package. (Can we talk about how the judges kept the elimination after Top 10 and it was never acknowledged on the show? And how the girls were “beasts” slaying the boys THE WHOLE SEASON, probably to compensate for the Girl Slaughter of Season 7?) Melanie got dubbed America’s Favorite Dancer (by the judges) in the auditions and was never truly challenged or critiqued (by the judges) during the whole season. It could’ve cost Melanie the win she totally deserved if she hadn’t been so adorable and talented. We’re getting tired of Nigel deciding who’s going to win and then trying to make it so. Is it America’s Favorite Dancer or is it Nigel’s Favorite Dancer? Guess which show we’re not going to watch next season?

So how do we fix this, you might ask? John suggests that we need more charismatic dancers who are really good in one style and have to fight to conquer other styles (like Ivan and Russell, who won his season). Marianya says she misses seeing the dancers really challenged at the beginning of the show. Fans of SYTYCD love watching the unexpected partnership and the unexpected dancer struggle and then achieve, making themselves our favorites in the process.

Margaret: Part of what makes those first few weeks so interesting, besides watching partnerships that we really hook into (Melanie & Marko) is wondering how other dancers would work together. If Kayla & Max/Ashley & Kupono hadn’t been in the bottom during week 2 of season 5, Max & Ashley may not have been eliminated at the same time and we wouldn’t have gotten to see the surprisingly great partnership of Kayla & Kupono—which means we wouldn’t have gotten “Addiction” and it’s rated as one of the best numbers the show has ever had, rightly so.

So one way to fix this would be to go back to SYTYCD’s roots. We’ve had some of the most technically gifted dancers the last three seasons and sometimes we could hardly bring ourselves to care because while there was nothing “wrong” with a dancer or a routine, we just couldn’t get excited. This might mean more bad routines and bad dancing but will make us so grateful again for the truly transcendent moments. Which brings us to…

3. We need diversity in dance styles and choreographers. Doreana Sanchez is not the only person choreographing disco routines and Nakul dev Mahajan is not the only Bollywood choreographer. Go to Canada if you don’t believe me. What would happen if there were only one contemporary routine on any given show or maybe only one contemporary routine every few weeks? What if we HAD to depend on Afro Jazz, House, all of the Ballroom styles, Bollywood, Pas de Deux , etc. to fill in the episode?

And for diversity, we don’t even have to look any further than the other SYTYCD franchises. Canada and UK have phenomenal choreographers (and dancers!), as did Australia. Those are just the English-speaking franchises. What wonderful choreographers could we find if the producers imported from the Ukraine SYTYCD or the Turkish or Polish versions?

4. And speaking of one big happy family, why not create another Fall show, but make it different, perhaps a shorter super competition? What if we had SYTYCD SuperStars and all of the previous contestants from ALL of the franchises were eligible to come back and compete for the “World’s Favorite Dancer” title? Maybe this show is 2 episodes a week for only 4 weeks, just to make it special and so that it might not overlap with the World Series again? Dancers featured on SYTYCD don’t have a potential “product” like American Idol singers do when they release a cd, so anytime the producers can create a vehicle for these dancers that doesn’t overshadow the current cast, they’re helping create more of a career and presence for the dancers. The great thing about this idea is that it totally supports this next point…

5. Ditch the musical guests. Or ditch about 90% of them. Keep the 10% that are willing to use SYTYCD dancers for backup dancers (including the current cast! didn’t that happen one season?). Maybe the musical performances bring in money, or maybe you producers only think they do. The reality is, they usually suck and I’m only watching the dancers anyway. It’s like, on Dancing with the Stars, the ONLY reason I watch the musical performances is to catch the dancing that happens at the same time. I would MUCH RATHER see dance performances. It’d be a good time to show us alumni dancers re-dancing their iconic numbers as much more evolved dancers (think Kent and LoFro doing the prom number – it was only 8 months later and they’d already become such different dancers). Bring in performers from all the other SYTYCD franchises, like you did with UK’s recent winner Matt Flint. Pairing him with the all-too-soon-eliminated Nick and Jess in a tap routine that THEY choreographed? BRILLIANT. Easily one of the highlights of not just the finale, but of the season. Do it more. That’s the key to re-building your audience: when you do something we like, do it more. When you do something we don’t like, stop doing it.

6. Which means, bring back the smaller and more intimate stage. Season 8’s stage (or the camera work and lack of distracting backlights) was better than the Seasons 6 and 7 monstrosity, but only by a bit. Watching SYTYCD Canada reminds me of how amazing the original stage is and you really need to listen to us and bring it back. It was a big part of why we fell in love with the show and the Seasons 1-5 dancers. Do you know why? We were closer to them. There were more physical possibilities for the choreographers when it came to moving the dancers around the stage because it wasn’t a giant, uniform thing. When it comes down to it, the stage represents the entire SYTYCD producers vs SYTYCD audience disagreement. With this big uber stage (since S6), you are focusing on the package, the spectacle. The more intimate circle stage that we love and still mourn focuses on the dancers.

Margaret: I miss my stairs! There was something about the old stage and how it was round that made the dances feel like stories, not performances for an audience. We were able to get more closeups, feel the emotions, and the set was about enhancing the dancing, not enhancing the spectacle. My best example came from, oddly, the guy I think used the stage the best during his time with SYTYCD, Wade. With “Ruby Blue,” Brandon and Janette entered the story by popping up from behind a wall and coming down the stairs, and their ability to use the stage in that entrance played a major role in the believability of the movements. But, in Season 6, with the “inside Van Goh’s head” piece Wade did for Peter and Pauline, the ridiculous fractured painting that rotated and flipped on the projecting screen was super distracting and took away from what was actually a really well-danced piece, especially from Peter. It was a very cool routine and they danced it really well, but their technical success was overshadowed by the “overdoneness” of the set.

7. Instead of spending the money on the bigger stage and a lot of flash, we would rather that you spend the money to figure out how to release SYTYCD DVDs so we can re-watch our favorite seasons without resorting to YouTube and other means. There is a market for it, so figure it out. Whenever you focus on the dancers–current, alumni, International franchise dancers, whatever–you can’t go wrong with us. That’s the simple fact at the heart of the matter.

And now that we’ve critiqued you quite a lot, here’s a list of what we like and want you to keep.

1. The All-Stars – having them arrive at the Top 10 is the perfect marriage. Keep it up. Only, we want to see them re-dance their iconic routines and you missed a lot of opportunities to do this during Season 8. Fix that.

Margaret: Not only does this give us the chance to see dancers we love again, but use this as a way to plug their success. Allison & Ivan were All-Stars in the same week, how were they not asked to dance together?! Same with Chelsie & Mark! Those are two of the most successful partnerships, and some of the best personalities, the show has ever had, be proud of that, they are SYTYCD success to the highest degree.

2. The Meet the Top 20 performance – sheer genius. It’s been a highlight of each season you’ve done it. Especially since we get to see the dancers twice on the live show before anyone’s eliminated. Keep that.

3. We like the dancers you pick! We just want you to cut back on the contemporary/jazz and pick some dancers with different backgrounds. We want them to be challenged more and truly judged, all of them and fairly. And clearly they’re talented, because they’re going on to dance in movies, commercials, music videos, music tours, Broadway shows, Glee and DWTS.

Margaret: We also love underdogs, they’re fun to root for. Give us more Tads, Russells, Dominics, Jeanines, Evans, Nicks, even Lauren Froderman floundered her 1st week and was in danger of going home!

4. Cat is the one thing most of us can agree on. She smooths over the awkward moments and she uses her great sense of humor to keep things rolling. I love it when she gets to pick dances for the finale show.

Remember, no matter what, we love the show. We only want to like it again.

Sincerely (and xoxo),

SYTYCD Fans/PureSYTYCD writers

P.S. Sorry this is a little long – clearly we had a lot to say.

September 6, 2011 I Written By

Podcast: SYTYCD Season 8 – Top 4 Performance and Finale

Summary
For the finale of So You Think You Can Dance season 8 we give you a super-sized podcast with 15 more minutes of content. We were happy with Melanie’s win and were pleasantly surprised that the top two dancers this season were both women, which has not happened before on this program. The performance episode was not up to the high standards of past seasons which was disappointing for us, but there were some highlights such as Marko and Lauren F.’s wonderful contemporary piece by Tessandra Chavez and the captivating performance by Melanie and Sasha in the second Stacey Tookey routine of the night.

The results show reminded us of many of the great routines from the season, although we were surprised by how the judges picks seemed to place less emphasis on everyone except for Melanie, Marko and Sasha (even Tadd only had one non-group routine repeated). This portion of the show has historically served as a warm-up for the forthcoming tour and features many of the routines that are expected to show up. But here we had many routines that involved all-stars, none of which will likely be on the tour. It was unexpected for the judges picks to lack variety.

We conclude the podcast with a discussion of the show’s production and the effect it’s having on the pacing and the way we get to know the dancers. We pinpoint that the approach towards the show changed in season 6, when they moved to the live show format. At this point the packages became shorter and contained more schtick and the judges comments started having less substance due to the time constraints of a live program. We also discuss the choreographers and that some of them tailor their work to their selected dancers and that others do not and whether this is a fair way of doing things. Finally, we discuss the variety of dancers in the top 20 in later seasons versus the early seasons and the effect this seems to have on the type of choreography we see each week.

Please let us know your thoughts by dropping us a comment here after listening! We love to hear feedback and what you thought of the show. We also encourage you to check out our twitter feed!

We want to thank everyone that has tuned into our podcasts during the course of the season! We’ve enjoyed doing this and its been a learning experience for us! We’re planning to do podcasts for season 9 of So You Think You Can Dance, so check back with us in May 2012. We’re going to continue doing our Big Brother podcasts and will be adding The X-Factor to our weekly discussions when it premieres on September 21st. We are also adding a Week in Review podcast in the fall for all the other shows we watch during that time. So if any of that sounds interesting to you, then follow our blog Reflections on Pop Entertainment and watch for our updates. If you’re only interested in our So You Think You Can Dance material, we’ll see you again next summer!

Episode Length: 44:53

Time Stamps
0:00 – Introduction: Congrats to Melanie! Guest judges: Katie Holmes and Kenny Ortega and the choice to have celebrity judges
2:37 – Melanie and Marko’s disco
4:15 – Sasha and Mark’s jazz
5:44 – Tadd and Joshua’s hip-hop
7:10 – Melanie and Robert’s contemporary
8:29 – Sasha and Marko’s broadway
10:46 – Sasha and Tadd’s chacha
12:57 – Marko and Lauren F.’s contemporary
14:36 – Tadd and Melanie’s jazz
16:01 – Melanie and Sasha’s contemporary
18:27 – Marko and Tadd’s gumboot stepping
20:28 – The order of the placing: 2 girls in the top
22:22 – Results show: The new top 20 routine and tap routine
24:28 –  Results show: The judges picks were stacked towards Melanie, Sasha and Marko and didn’t seem to be a retrospective of the season
28:58 – Post-season discussion: The direction of production and how it affects the show – pacing in live shows vs recorded shows, an increasing focus on the judging panel, choreographers tailoring their work to the dancers, variety in the dancers in the Top 20 (stacked towards contemporary/jazz now), variety in routine genres (less ballroom now, more contemporary/jazz)
42:34 – Wrap-up: What are your thoughts on our post-season discussion? What we’re going to be doing in future podcasts (Big Brother, The X-Factor, Week in Review)


Listen to the podcast

Episode 15 direct download

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August 15, 2011 I Written By

Over the past few years my fiancée Meghan slowly brought me into the world of television, turning me into a full-fledged fan of both scripted and reality shows. So You Think You Can Dance turned into one of my favorite reality shows as it is a competition that takes itself seriously, providing the audience with artistic choreography and talented dancers. It's certainly not something I ever expected to get emotionally invested in, but here I am! Meghan and I are very analytic when it comes to the things we enjoy. We constantly discussed and analyzed shows with each other and after doing this for a couple years, we decided that we should turn these discussions into a podcast. We created Reflections on Pop Entertainment, a podcast that provides commentary and analysis of popular entertainment as found in visual mediums, particularly television and film. So You Think You Can Dance Season 8 is the first television series we're covering with weekly podcasts and has allowed us to find our voice as well as actively contribute to the fan community. We hope that you'll enjoy our installments as they are posted to Pure So You Think You Can Dance!

my favorite season 8 dances

whew! what a finale! while we’re all still relishing last night’s amazingness, thought I’d take a minute and post my favorite dances from the season. this was a great chance to look back for me, and, for as much grief as we had with things that we felt were wrong with season 8, it still produced some pretty awesome numbers.

These aren’t in order of preference, just week they were done, mostly b/c I’m cheating and using Wikipedia 😉

Iveta’s intro (ballroom medley with Pasha)–while this wasn’t quite as steamy as last season’s intro of Cristina Santana w/ All-Stars Pasha and Anya, this was, by far, the best ballroom we had this season, mostly because it was Iveta in her style. Caitlynn and Pasha’s Argentine Tango that was replayed last night was soo beautiful and a fabulous showcase for her, but technically, this medley was just unbelievable.

Melanie and Marko’s “Turn to Stone”–on the night of the premiere, this was the only number that made me literally punch the air with excitement. I probably rewatched this number a dozen times over that week. For me, Melanie & Marko are the best pair the show has had since Katee & Joshua. They made each other better dancers, and emotionally they were just totally in sync. The slow cartwheel that Marko does over Melanie still gives me goosebumps.

Caitlynn & Mitchell’s “Turning Tables”–our first chance to see them as a couple and they did NOT disappoint. Stacey Tookey has a way of bringing emotions out of dancers that they may not have touched before. The chairs and lamps could have gotten in the way, but they really worked with them well, and the interplay between light and dark made the piece really interesting and powerful. For what Mitchell lacked in technical refinement, he made up for in pure emotion and drive, and I could tell he had a lot to prove after not being able to dance week 1. I loved this partnership.

Clarice & Jess’s “Fly Me to the Moon” foxtrot–as you all probably saw from my posts, I was NOT Jess’s biggest fan, I found in immature and annoying a lot. But NOT in this number, I loved this one. His broadway background lent itself really well to the jazzy bluesy feel of the song. Though there were quite a few points when they were in closed hold when the movements felt heavy, their musicality overshadowed that for me. It was THIS type of movement I was looking for in Ryan & Ricky’s broadway that they did a couple of weeks after this, when Jesse Tyler Ferguson said they were “hitting the ceiling” with their movements and not finishing them.

Tadd & Jordan’s “One Night Stand” hip hop–just so much fun. really great to see Tadd kind of in his element, and how NappyTabs were able to incorporate some of what Tadd does really well. I agree with the judges that it almost became too much about the story, but this was one that I just really enjoyed watching.

Caitlynn & Mitchell’s “To Love You More” contemporary–one of Mandy Moore’s best pieces this season (I’d put it just behind Neil & Melanie, but I’ll get to that later!) The trust they had in each other was innocent but so mature at the same time. They’re both so young, but they tapped into something really amazing.

Sasha & Alexander’s “That’s Life”–their best dance together, Alexander finally let it all go. He was so tight for so long, but in this one, he just felt free, and it lifted a weight from their partnership that had been there really since the beginning. This was also one of Tyce’s best pieces.

Sasha & Twitch’s “Misty Blue”–what can I say that hasn’t already been said?!

Neil & Melanie’s “Total Eclipse of the Heart”–for me, Neil wins the award for most improved dancer since his season aired. He’s become a really fabulous technician as well as an even better partner. He breathes life into the moments between the movements in a way he didn’t used to when he was on the show. Melanie matched Neil step for step, and really shined in this piece. And the leap!! The trust she had in him was just amazing. This was a goose-bump inducing one for sure.

Caitlynn & Tadd’s “White Tie & Tails” foxtrot–was this the best technically? no. But there was such joy on both of their faces. Jonathan Roberts, a pro from DWTS, really does the classic ballroom dances incredibly well. He has a real sense of how to impart wisdom on the dancers in terms of how to embody the dance even if you don’t quite have everything technically sound. And stylistically, Caitlynn looked AMAZING, wow.

Kent & Sasha’s Wall contemporary–Kent is my runner-up in the “most improved since his season aired” award. The strength that he has gained, both physically and emotionally since last summer is absolutely astounding. He would NOT have been able to pull of that routine the way he did this season last summer. And his strength helped Sasha’s strength and vulnerability really emerge.

Tadd & Melanie’s “A Chorus Line/Black Swan”-esque broadway–though I really liked Chris & Ashley’s “Please Mr. Jailer,” THIS is the broadway I would have rather seen last night. I know why they didn’t repeat it, but this was the best broadway of the season, by far. Nothing felt out of place, from the music to the camera work to the lighting to the dancing. It was so sexy but so mean at the same time, I know that sounds weird. For me, this was Tadd’s best dance other than the vulture dance with Jordan.

Lauren & Marko’s contemporary from finale night–this was my favorite dance from the finale. It started with the music; the fact that the music didn’t have big sweeping crescendos allowed the dancing to be the most important thing on the stage. The dancers could just dance, the music wasn’t ruling the way they moved, THEY ruled the way they moved in their relationship on stage together. Loved it loved it loved it. Tessandra hit the ball out of the park with this one.

so there’s my list! what do you guys think? any that I missed?

August 13, 2011 I Written By

SYTYCD Season 8 Finale Part 2 Music

So excited for tonight! I’m going to have to work double hard cause I’ll just want to soak it all in instead of taking notes. 🙂

Sonya Tayeh Top 20/Top 4 (+All-Stars??) Group Routine: District 78’s “Wanna Get Hype” – Wanna Get Hype - Radios At Reception

Mary picked Tyce’s Sasha/Kent routine: Me’Shell Ndegéocello’s “Fool of Me” – Fool of Me - Bitter

Nigel picked Nappytabs’s Melanie/Marko routine: Leona Lewis’s “I Got You” – I Got You - Echo (Deluxe Version)

Robin picked Mandy Moore’s Tadd/LoFro routine: Queen’s “Another One Bites the Dust” –Another One Bites the Dust - Queen: Greatest Hits

Lil C picked Nappytabs’s Miranda/Robert routine: Busta Rhymes’s “Break Ya Neck” – Break Ya Neck - Genesis

Cat picked Tyce’s Top 8 Group Routine: James Newton Howard’s “The Circus Sets Up” The Circus Sets Up - Water for Elephants (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack) – from the Water for Elephants soundtrack.

SYTYCD UK champ Matt Flint, Nick Young and Jess LeProtto tap to: Michael Buble’s “Can’t Buy Me Love” – Can't Buy Me Love - It's Time

Mary picked Mandy Moore’s Melanie/Neil routine: Bonnie Tyler’s “Total Eclipse of the Heart” – Total Eclipse of the Heart - Faster Than the Speed of Night

Jesse picked Sonya’s Marko/Allison routine: Jeff Buckley’s “I Know It’s Over” – I Know It's Over - So Real: Songs from Jeff Buckley

Tyce picked Sonya’s Top 10 Girls routine: Chonique Sneed ft. Lisette Bustamante’s “Pop, Drop and Roll” – Pop Drop & Roll (feat. Lisette Bustamante) - Pop Drop & Roll (feat. Lisette Bustamante) - Single

Lil C picked Spencer Liff’s Ashley/Chris routine: Rachel Sweet’s “Please, Mister Jailer” – Please, Mr. Jailer - Cry-Baby (Music from the Original Motion Picture Soundtrack) from the “Crybaby” soundtrack (THANK YOU BETH!)

Nigel picked Christopher Scott’s Sasha/Twitch routine: Dorothy Moore’s “Misty Blue” – Misty Blue - Misty Blue

Sonya picked Christopher Scott’s Top 10 Guys routine: Nathan Lanier’s “Velocity” – Velocity - Velocity - Single

Jesse picked Miriam and Leonardo’s Caitlynn/Pasha Argentine tango: Orquesta Color Tango’s “Malajunta” – Malajunta - Con Estilo Para Bailar

Mary picked Travis’s Melanie/Marko routine: Ingrid Michaelson’s “Turn to Stone” – Turn to Stone - Turn to Stone - Single

Nigel picked Sonya’s Melanie/Sasha routine: District 78’s “Game On” – Game On - Game On - Single

August 11, 2011 I Written By